Apple Cider Vinegar for Acne
Disclaimer: This content has been produced purely for informational and educational purposes only and is never intended to be used as a substitute for professional medical guidelines including diagnosis, advice, and treatment.
Acne is one of the most bothersome conditions, affecting nearly every adolescent at some point in time and in some instances may continue to exist even in adult life. The use of apple cider vinegar for acne has been around for centuries. It is believed that apple cider vinegar has significant medicinal properties that may help with managing various skin conditions including acne, sunburn, and skin blemishes.
In this article, we’ll be exploring the effects of using apple cider vinegar for acne and associated skin conditions that have been found for centuries through traditional uses. But before we get into how apple cider vinegar can help with acne, it’s important to know the fundamentals of acne a little bit more. So, let’s get started.
Table of contents
- What is acne?
- Symptoms of acne
- Causes of acne
- What is apple cider vinegar?
- How apple cider vinegar can help with acne
- How to use apple cider vinegar for acne
- Precautions and side effects
- Final words
What is acne?
Acne is a bothersome skin condition in which the hair follicles get clogged by dead skin cells and excess oil. It may develop various skin issues such as pimples, whiteheads, or blackheads. Though acne may affect people of all age groups, it is most prevalent among teenagers.
While the majority of acne conditions are easily manageable with self-care home remedies, it can be persistent in certain cases that may require medical care. Severe acne may contribute to developing mental distress and scar on the skin. The earlier it is treated, the better.
Symptoms of acne
Acne generally appears on the face, but it may also occur in several other places as well including shoulders, arms, trunk, buttocks, and legs. Acne causes various changes in the skin that widely vary depending on the causative factors, skin type, and severity of the conditions. They may include:
- Papules - which are small tender bumps on the skin typically red in color
- Pustules or pimples - which are filled with yellow or white pus at their tips
- Blackheads - that are open plugged pores
- Whiteheads - that are closed plugged pores
- Nodules - that are relatively large and solid lumps beneath the skin that causes pain
- Cystic lesions - that are lumps beneath the skin filled with pus and cause pain
Causes of acne
There are four major factors that mainly contribute to developing an acne condition:
- Excessive production of oil on the skin called sebum
- Hair follicles get clogged by excess sebum and dead skin cells
- Trapping of bacteria
- Inflammation or the body’s natural defense response
However, there are certain things that might trigger or worsen an acne condition, such as:
- Hormonal changes - changes in levels of certain hormones such as androgens may increase sebum production, especially during puberty which may result in acne breakouts.
- Diet - studies suggest that certain foods that are rich in carbohydrates such as chips, bagels, and bread may increase the risk of developing acne.
- Certain medications - some synthetic drugs such as lithium, testosterone, corticosteroids, or estrogen may increase acne risk or make them worse.
- Stress - excess stress may make acne worse in preexisting cases.
- Lifestyle and environment - certain lifestyle and environmental factors such as excessively rubbing the skin or too much humidity may also lead to acne breakouts in some people.
What is apple cider vinegar?
Apple cider vinegar is apple juice that is derived from crushed apples through a two-step fermentation process. The first fermenting process transforms the sugar molecules in apples into alcohol and the second one transforms the alcohol into acetic acid finally.
Acetic acid is the major active ingredient in apple cider vinegar that is considered responsible for the diverse health benefits of apple cider vinegar, ranging from promoting weight loss to managing blood sugar levels to alleviating symptoms of acne.
How apple cider vinegar can help with acne
Apple cider vinegar can help with managing and preventing acne in several ways. It shows strong antibacterial and keratolytic actions that can potentially help treat acne and its associated symptoms. Keratolytic action is the process of removing the outer layer of old and dead cells on the skin.
Bacteria, particularly a type of bacteria called Propionibacterium acnes (P. acnes) play the key role in the development of bacteria-induced acne. It can develop skin inflammation and eventually scarring. Apple cider vinegar and the acidic contents it contains including acetic acid, succinic acid, lactic acid, and citric acid have a significant ability to kill bacteria that may cause acne.
Scarring or skin discoloration is one of the major concerns in the treatment of acne. With its keratolytic properties, apple cider vinegar can help remove dead skin cells from the outer layer and promote new cell regeneration on the skin. This helps reduce inflammation and improve the appearance of the skin after the healing of acne.
How to use apple cider vinegar for acne
Apple cider vinegar can be applied topically to the affected area. You can prick an apple cider vinegar capsule with a small needle and dilute the ingredients into the water for applying directly to the skin. Taking 500 mg to1000 mg apple cider vinegar capsules per day along with other skin nutrients such as vitamin C is also recommended to heal the acne from the inside out.
Precautions and side effects
Since apple cider vinegar is acidic in nature, applying directly to the skin for a longer period may burn the skin. Therefore, dilute apple cider vinegar with a considerable amount of water before applying topically. It’s also a good idea to perform a small patch test to check the sensitivity.
For internal use, consuming too much apple cider vinegar may cause some side effects such as nausea, vomiting, decreased potassium levels, and eroded tooth enamels. It’s recommended to consult with a licensed naturopathic doctor before starting apple cider vinegar for acne or other conditions to determine the safety and method of use.
Apple cider vinegar is an effective home remedy to help with managing various symptoms of acne. It has significant antibacterial and keratolytic properties that can help kill acne-causing bacteria and reduce the risk of scar formation. However, it’s recommended to consult with a licensed naturopathic professional to determine what method of use would be the best for your specific condition.
Here you can see Vorst’s pure and natural Apple Cider Vinegar with Vitamin C Capsules.